'Gun Show Loophole' Bill Dies in Committee

Howell was a sponsor of bill that would demand background checks at gun shows.

A Virginia Senate bill co-sponsored by Sen. Janet Howell (D-Reston) that would close the "gun-show loophole" allowing people to purchase firearms at gun shows without a background check died in committee Wednesday.

The committee voted 8-7 to stop SB 1001 from going forward.

Lawmakers were unable to work out a compromise, even after Sen. William Stanley (R-Franklin County) said last week he would work with Sens. Henry Marsh (D-Richmond), and Don McEachin (D-Henrico), to reach a deal.

Stanley has since told colleagues on the Senate Courts of Justice Committee that he is close to crafting a measure, but doesn't feel the details can be worked out this session, the Newport News Daily Press reported.

Stanely said he will alter the bill and present a new one next year that would be more likely to make it into law. 

Marsh's bill would have required firearms sales at gun shows to go through a licensed dealer only, but private sellers could consign their guns to those dealers.

Howell called the delay "unconscionable," the Daily Press reported.

"We've had untold tragedies that still break our hearts when we think about them," Howell said. "And yet we're letting people get guns without any background checks. It's untenable; it's unconscionable. Delaying another year makes absolutely no sense at all."

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Lilguy January 24, 2013 at 04:32 PM
State marketing slogan: "Virginia is for GUN lovers." Did anyone really expect any other outcome? It will take Congressional action to stop this unbridled access to guns--and that will be tough!
DGeorge January 24, 2013 at 05:28 PM
Unbridled? What do you think the "Gunshow Loophole" is? Do you know?
ADSinNoVA January 24, 2013 at 06:05 PM
This surprises no one. There is no acceptable gun legislation to the GOP. Even in the tremendously unlikely event this had somehow snuck its way out of committee it would have died without fanfare. One can only hope that the fervency for which legislators hold to their gun rights they will also be seen in appropriating the tremendous funding needed to bolster our mental health services and provide the support children and their families need. Unlikely as well.
The Analyst January 24, 2013 at 06:59 PM
Ahhhhhhh.....a sigh of relief for cartel drug pushers was just heard.
DGeorge January 24, 2013 at 08:59 PM
Why would this be a relief for the cartels, please? The only ones selling to the cartels were Obama and Eric Holder. They sold hundreds of guns that killed an untold number of Mexicans and at least one of our Border Patrolmen.
DGeorge January 24, 2013 at 09:00 PM
Again, please tell me what the loophole is.
Lilguy January 24, 2013 at 09:32 PM
Virginia ranks high--maybe first--on the list of states that have been sources of guns for the Mexican drug cartels (don't know about Colombian, etc.). It is so bad a few years ago, even after the modest changes in Virginia law following the VT slaughter, that New York City was running undercover operations against Virginia gun dealers violating NYC laws. That may have stopped when the Virginia GA passed a law making that a felony--and protecting gun sellers from NYPD while enabling sales that violate other states' laws.
Lilguy January 24, 2013 at 09:44 PM
...and just for the record: "Fast and Furious", the truly idiot "gunwalking" program to sell guns to Mexican drug dealers so they could be identified and arrested, was the second such foolish effort. It followed directly on the heels of ATF's "Operation Wide Receiver" launched by, yes, you guessed it, President Bush and AG Alberto Gonzales, soon to be followed by AG Mike Mukasey. The Bush administration indicted no one, but--in closing out the operation--the Obama administration indicted eleven low-level gun traffickers with six convictions (with one-year sentences!). Some otherwise very smart people in both parties just didn't think about the unintended consequences, including the death of a USBP officer.
Lilguy January 24, 2013 at 09:54 PM
Definition: Individuals "not engaged in the business" of dealing firearms, or who only make "occasional" sales within their state of residence, are under no requirement to conduct background checks on purchasers or maintain records of sale (although even private sellers are forbidden under federal law from selling firearms to persons they have reason to believe are felons or otherwise prohibited from purchasing firearms). Those seeking to close the "Gun Show Loophole" argue that it provides convicted felons and other prohibited purchasers with opportunities to evade background checks, as they can easily buy firearms from private sellers with no accountability or oversight. Presently, 17 states regulate private firearm sales at gun shows. Seven states require background checks on all gun sales at gun shows (California, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Oregon, New York, Illinois and Colorado). Four states (Hawaii, Maryland, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania) require background checks on all handgun, but not long gun, purchasers at gun shows. Six states require individuals to obtain a permit to purchase handguns that involves a background check (Massachusetts, Michigan, North Carolina, Iowa, Nebraska). Certain counties in Florida require background checks on all private sales of handguns at gun shows. The remaining 33 states do not restrict private, intrastate sales of firearms at gun shows in any manner--AND THAT WOULD INCLUDE VIRGINIA.
Skip Endale January 24, 2013 at 10:53 PM
we have 310 million firearms in the US and 1.5 million of those are geared towards warfare. the numbers are indeed very surprising, a gun for every citizen. if we double the number of guns we could cut crime in half. so yes we need more gun shows.
DGeorge January 25, 2013 at 02:15 AM
Lil guy, you claim, " Virginia ranks high--maybe first--on the list of states that have been sources of guns for the Mexican drug cartels (don't know about Colombian, etc.). " Of course you have some documentation for this outrageous claim. Please present it. Now, if I buy a new shotgun, and sell my old shotgun to my neighbor is that a problem? Please respond.
DGeorge January 25, 2013 at 02:22 AM
Now , you are saying that President Bush initiated the Gunwalking program and that justifies Obamas and Erics' Fast and Furious program? With Fast and Furious not only did they kill many,( hundreds ) of Mexicans but they used that program to claim falsely that the USA was the source of firearms smuggled into Mexico. They were right. only they were the ones doing the smuggling.
The Convict January 25, 2013 at 02:48 AM
If your neighbor is a felon or mentally ill, then, yes, the sale of that weapon could run afoul of the law not to mention reality. Of course, you might be able to avoid the legal issue if you claim that you had not knowledge about your neighbor's felonious acts or his aberrant behavior Do you think that sale to felons and the mentally ill are okay at gun shows? if not, then what measures would you be prepared to accept in order to prevent purchases by these two classes of individuals?
The Convict January 25, 2013 at 02:51 AM
Now, I don't know about the Fast and Furious program, but I assume that if the US was smuggling guns into Mexico and then selling them, there would have been much more ruckus raised by the Mexican government. I expect that probably the sale and transfer of those weapons was done in the US, and the purchaser smuggled them into Mexico. But, again, I might be wrong about that.
DGeorge January 25, 2013 at 11:49 AM
Convict, where have you been? Please do some research, there were, and are, great investigations going on. Holder and Obama are stone walling the release of papers relating to F&F. The Mexican government is quite angry that we allowed this to happen. And it is not IF the government was smuggling guns it is a proven FACT.
The Convict January 25, 2013 at 02:45 PM
Obfuscation, Georgie, obfuscation. So what does "Fast and Furious" have to do with closing the gun show loophole? OH, that's right, NOTHING. So, do you think that we should do nothing about access to weapons in spite of the horrific events that happened at Newtown, Ct?
Lilguy January 25, 2013 at 05:47 PM
That's exactly what I DIDN'T say. Both administrations were stupid beyond measure in pursuing gunwalking programs. The point was (and is) that gunwalking didn't begin with Pres. Obama. But you don't care because you have an agenda that defies logic, much less humanity.
DGeorge January 25, 2013 at 08:54 PM
And what happened in Newtown? Did the shooter buy his weapons from his mother or did he steal them? What does Newtown have to do with the loophole. Skipped real quick over that Fast and Furious comment didn't you. My guess is you learned something new.
Amy January 28, 2013 at 12:06 AM
Sure, DGeorge, the Newtown shooter stole his guns from his mother (who should never have taught him to shoot in the first place, knowing about his mental illness), but the Virginia Tech shooter and others got their guns through gun shows and private sales, where their mental illness was not a factor because no background checks were done.
Java Master January 30, 2013 at 11:31 PM
The failure of this common sense legislation is a tragedy for all Virginians. Shame on the legislators who are nothing more but STOOGES for the radical guns-at-all-costs lobby and their runnning dog lackeys, the gun manfacturers and firearms retailers/resellers.
DGeorge January 31, 2013 at 02:46 AM
Again Java you ignore the argument and throw stones, Tsk, Tsk.
Java Master January 31, 2013 at 03:10 AM
I make a point of ignoring the "arguments" of the all-guns-all-the-time advocates. Especially yours, since you enjoy being argumentative for its own sake. The fact is that the failure of this legislation is only a temporary setback, I remain convinced that good sense will eventually prevail over the blandishments of the radical 2nd amendment bully-boys. Reasonable regulation of gun ownership and sales are within the ambit of the 2nd amendment. We have the Supreme Court to thank for reminding us that gun rights are not absolute. You should take that to heart, and as before, don't let the courthouse door hit you on the way out.
Virginia Harlow January 31, 2013 at 03:24 AM
Oh, God. It's still Bush's fault!
Virginia Harlow February 01, 2013 at 07:22 PM
Assuming you finally do get such foolishness passed, what on earth makes you think the criminal element or the insane won't just steal guns or purchase them from other criminals? You will not have achieved anything at all but growth of government power at the cost of tax dollars. Not to mention, you will criminalize law abiding citizens who won't comply with such nonsense if they don't want their gun anymore and want to sell it to someone else. You just criminalize people who weren't doing anything wrong in the first place. Or, is that the plan. Shades of Ayn Rand.


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